How NHS staff can save money on their Made To Measure Blinds order

Do you or any of your family and friends work in the National Health Service (NHS)?

My DIY Blinds has teamed up with NHS Discounts and Deals to provide marvellous savings on blinds.

NHS Discounts and Deals is a one-stop website for all NHS staff. The dedicated site provides exclusive NHS staff offers and deals on local and national businesses.

So as one of the country’s leading blinds suppliers it’s only natural that we would want to be able to offer our wonderful NHS staff savings on our great products.

It’s free to register online to use the site, so do click through and start saving today.


Why you will love buying from My DIY Blinds:

My DIY Blinds helps you every step of the way when you want to choose, buy and fit blinds.

We provide:

  • Simple-to-follow buyers’ guides to help you choose the right blind for your needs
  • Straightforward measuring guides to help with your order
  • Video and printed instructions to help you fit your blinds once they have arrived

We also provide next-day delivery for samples, so you can see if your choice matches your décor.

We have a reputation for top level customer service and value for money.

Hundreds of customers have written reviews giving us five-star ratings on independently verified consumer feedback websites.

Go back to nature with a made to measure roller blind

Celebrity TV presenters Matt Baker and Julia Bradbury have a lot to answer for.

An average of 5.5 million viewers tune in to watch them on Countryfile on BBC One and the programme has seen peaks of 6.3 million. But the real stars of the show are the creatures featured.

Similar shows on other channels generate huge interest and the ranks of nature lovers – already booming in conservation-aware Britain – are being swelled with every tweet of a bird and every flutter of a butterfly’s wing.

Property-owners love to reflect their passions in the décor of their homes, which is why our range of nature-inspired prints is proving so popular. People just love the natural world.

Here are some of the variations that are making our blinds such a hit.

  • Subtle designs – The fabrics and prints lend a subtlety to the creatures featured. There is almost a subliminal feel to our papillon autumn blind, for example, with gentle yet unmistakable butterflies merging with gorgeous floral petals.
  • Unusual hues – Add a burst of colour to contrast with the minimalist design so popular in contemporary interior design. Made to measure blinds with a splash of orange, red or pink do just that – to terrific effect.
  • White space and silhouettes – Our osprey natural and osprey duck egg designs will appeal to you if you prefer the more muted approach.  The birds and the branches on which they perch are white silhouettes against the colour background.
  •  The lighter touch – The dragonfly red thumb design uses the gentlest of lines to suggest the presence of a dragonfly, and this delicate approach is appreciated by many – as our orders will testify.

 

Readers of this blog post qualify for a 5% discount on their order. Simply add the code Bloggive5 at the checkout – offer valid until 31st August 2014 so feel free to share with your family and friends!  Shop now!

How to work your pastels and Made To Measure Blinds in to a beautiful interior designed home

In days gone by, elegant ladies were sometimes described as ‘pale and interesting’. How splendid!

When it comes to interiors, though, there have been times when pale has been distinctly less than riveting. But then along came 2014, and a new look for lighter shades that has given them a genuinely new lease of life, especially when teamed with the appropriate made to measure blind.

As a result, pastel shades are the subtle charmers of the elegant designer’s palette at the moment.

What gave sherbet shades a boost earlier this year was a thumbs-up from fashion gurus including Roberto Cavalli and Nina Ricci, who filled their catwalks with buttercups and baby blues, pistachios and pinks.

Many of these shades, while undeniably pastel, have plenty of pop, and teamed with spotless neutrals they look simply delicious.

In the living room, pastels can create a timeless, serene feel that works well both during the day and in the evening. Texture is important to create a sense of luxury, so add rough-pile rugs and driftwood lamps to take the smooth edge off these silky shades.


You don’t have to restrain pastels to accessories, though – the lemon chair from Tesco would make a sweet little statement in the corner of any room, and it’s unusual enough to be eye-catching.
Highlight a cream linen sofa with pastel cushions – with delicate shades like this, you really have little problem with colours clashing, so you can choose from a pale rainbow of shades and pile them high.

Pastels are a natural choice in the bedroom, of course, where they make a pretty room that speaks of comfort. They’re definitely on the delicate side, but create a fresh atmosphere that makes the room a tranquil place to be.

You can have a bit of fun with pastels, too – we love the Birdhouse wallpaper from Pierre et Coco with its quirky design.

This would work well as a feature wall in most rooms, with the colours picked out in accessories.

Another fun item is the suitcase storage from Oliver Bonas, piled up and pretty – who could resist?


We love the jolly wall hooks from dotcomgiftshop made out of cooking implements – really different!
Pastels even come up to scratch in the kitchen, where they bring to mind icing and cupcakes, sweeties and candyfloss.

Neutrals are always popular in our homes, and for good reason – they create a soothing ambience that allows us to relax without too much going on around us visually.

But if neutrals seem a little too monotone for you, take the plunge and reach for the pastels. Like neutrals, they have a serene appeal that’s timeless and easy on the eye, but with a dash of added interest. When we’re surrounded by ice-cream shades, it’s easy to chill out.

How to ensure that bistro kitchen look with the help of made to measure blinds

So you like the look of the bistro-style kitchens leaping out at you in all the homes magazines and the lifestyle shows on television?

But what are the crucial elements that will set your kitchen apart from others, ensuring admiring comments from all your guests?

  • Marble or marble effect tiling and kitchen tops

What do we love about marble? In a kitchen or bathroom it’s so fresh and clean and oozes class.

It’s very tough and hard-wearing, so your investment will endure.

You don’t have to use marble on every worktop, though. You could always use it as a splashback or even just a chopping board if the budget is tight.

  • Mono colour scheme

Black and white makes a big impact, giving your kitchen the wow factor, and there is always the opportunity to add a splash of colour in your blinds to provide a highlight and a contrast.

  • Stainless steel

Even if you don’t want the industrial look for your hob and extractor fan, you can introduce it by placing a stainless steel island or breakfast bar with shiny seats and complementary implements and containers.

  • Flooring

Flooring can make or break the feel or a room, so for somewhere as busy as the kitchen it’s worth investing at the top end of the market, if at all possible.

Real wooden flooring or smart tiles are well worth the investment, bearing in mind that the area of floor you need to cover won’t be as large as other areas of your home.

  • Made To Measure Blinds

And, of course, the finishing touch is a Bistro Taupe Roller Blind –  from My DIY Blinds, with free Australian mainland delivery and a 60-month guarantee.

Shades of Grey – let a Made to Measure Blind keep you on trend

We used to have a bit of a problem with grey. It was a bit school jumper, a little dull and nothing to cause excitement.

But then we took another look (maybe a certain novel gave us some new ideas…) and realised there’s a lot more to grey than we used to think.

And now grey, in all its shades from charcoal to dove, is the new neutral, and it’s overtaken taupe as our favourite use-anywhere shade.

My DIY Blinds have a great range to keep you bang on theme, including some wonderful black-out blinds that look great up or down.

To illustrate the huge range, you can pick up shades such as Charcoal, Mono Midnight, Viva Black, Viva Grey, Memphis Ebony, Costellow Silver, and a few more besides.  So, as you can see, we also incorporate some States-side chic into the equation

 

Click here to view our full range and request a sample!

 

Part of the appeal is that greys are simple to use and easy on the eye. Mix-and-match greys with other neutrals and the warm tones of natural wood, and you’ll always add a dash of class to your décor.

The school jumper has been left a long way behind, because grey is extremely versatile. You can give it a snap with a dash of red, or cool things right down by adding duck egg blue – and whichever you choose, it’s going to look sophisticated.

As an example, take a look at this Obi statement writing desk – its eau de nil top looks amazing against the softness of the grey work.

Where a black wall or black bedding can be a little, well… guy… charcoal grey is just elegant, and provides a superb backdrop to show off almost any kind of furniture.

 

It works well in a minimalist room, adding warmth to all the white, but is also very accepting of a busy family room packed with toys, accessories and fun (hides the marks, too!).

As our main picture, styled by Barker and Stonehouse, shows, grey can even take a rustic touch. The sisal-style natural rug and the recycled wood of the display units look fabulous when paired with the stripped floorboards, while the cool grey sofa and chair make this a rustic room with chic.

Grey knows how to take a pattern, too, as the Lausanne charcoal check armchair from Tesco shows. It’s stylish when paired with strong designs in silver, black or even red – a heavily-patterned grey-based wallpaper is superb for a feature wall in a living or dining room.

We’re also knocked out by the Wilfred filing cabinet by Suzy Newton, which is upholstered in Linwood fabric with pewter lettering marked over cracked gold. Wow – that’s how to use grey!

The shade can be whatever you want it to be. Bensons for Beds have created a stylish antique finish to their Carmen silver bedstead, which would look wonderful with soft grey and blue throws.

The best thing about grey is that now we’ve seen it in a different light, it’s starting to look like a classic already. Hard-wearing but packed with character, we can’t believe we’ve never thought more of it before.

And anyway, who would ever have been interested in 50 Shades of Beige?

How a Made To Measure Blind can bring texture into your scheme

Mention interior design and most people immediately think of colour and style of furnishings. At My DIY Blinds another key element springs to mind – texture.

It could be because we have such a fabulous range of textured blinds to share with customers, but looking at the wider picture, we love to inspire the imagination while also acknowledging the practical aspects of design. Texture – often overlooked – can play a crucial role in the feel of a room, whatever its size.

Texture can change the entire character of a living space, either by making a striking impact or by providing a subtle contrast to smooth, minimalist lines. Here’s how …

VISUAL IMPACT

The visual impact of a room is instant, so once the eye has appreciated how the room looks – its first impression, if you like – texture can take things a little deeper, either by providing a second layer of visual interest or by providing a tactile element.

LIGHT

Is the room naturally light? This might influence your choice of flooring, because a carpet won’t reflect as much light as a wooden floor. In the same way a smooth, shiny Venetian blind will give a very different feel to a textured vertical blind or a pleated blind.

COSINESS

Think about how the room is going to be used. You will be aiming for a totally different feel to a kitchen, study or family games room when compared with a lounge or room being used for entertaining or as your home cinema, for instance. Rooms where you’re aiming for cosiness will have more texture than those where you’re aiming for clean lines with a functional, efficient feeling to them. That’s not to say that textures are out of place in a kitchen or bathroom, but it is essential to plan carefully.

So how can we achieve those aims and what elements of a room are suitable for textures?


WALLS

Wallpaper and paint can both be textured, softening the surface or adding flair, depending on how flamboyant you want to be. You could also add wooden panelling to a feature wall to add character.

FLOORS

Flooring is a crucial element in any home, because by its nature everyone comes into contact with the floor, whereas hardly anyone touches a wall. Carpets provide a sumptuous feel but can appear tatty when not cared for properly, while wooden flooring is durable and smart, retaining its good looks for years.

TILES

Tiles are applied to walls and floors, so choice of finish is crucial. Matt or shiny, dark or light, whatever your choice a textured blind will complement the look perfectly.

FURNITURE

You can be at your most creative when choosing furniture, with so many materials available. Leather, wood, chrome and glass all combine in various ways to set the tone for a room, whether you’re aiming for elegance for traditional dining or stylish functionality in a kitchen-diner. Again, your choice of blind can provide the perfect finishing touch.

 

When it comes to texture the Made To Measure Blinds Vertical Blinds and Pleated Blinds ranges offer terrific options, as you can see in these images.

We hope our suggestions inspire you in your room makeovers.

 

Made To measure Blinds Vertical Blind specifications

• Mounted on a powder coated aluminium white or brown headrail.

• Quality louvers with white hangers, weights, control cord and chains.

• Metal Brackets with fixings, provide top, and face fix options.

• Draw cord weight.

• Child safety device, installation mandatory.

• Multiple control options at order stage.

• Min width 25cm max width 350cm.

 

Made To Measure Blinds Pleated Blinds 

Explore our the beautiful textures of our fabrics with shades of blue, grey, white, cream, beige, peach and terracotta.

Our regular fabrics are made of 100 per cent Polyester and offer glare reduction with a sun protection (SRC) factor of (8) of 9.

The reflectance rate of heat and sunlight through our pleated blinds is 59 per cent with an absorption rate of 31 per cent heat held in the fabric.

The structure of the blinds helps to filter sunlight and protect your furnishings from sun damage while helping you save on heating and cooling energy costs for your home.

 

 

• The beautiful taupe bedspread (above) colouring enhances the cross-stitch design and pattern of the velvet bedspread. The rich, exquisite velvet material can be used to add a touch of decadence to any bed. Your bedroom should be designed to please the senses and this bedspread with its gorgeous combination of taupe and velvet will do just that.  From www.kellyhoppen.com, $260

• Wonderful contrast of wood and glass in furniture in the Normann Copenhagen Ding Table (above) is from www.naken.co.uk/manufacturer, $325

• This textured Gingham Retro Lampshade (right) is from www.dotcomgiftshop.com, $29.95

A Journey into Dreams and Nightmares

At My DIY Blinds making sure our customers get a good night sleep is very important to us. All around the world at various times, people close their eyes and go to sleep. Perhaps they will experience an incredible dream or they might find themselves trapped in a terrifying nightmare…

Dreams and nightmares play a huge part in our lives, bigger than we even probably realise. The average human being for instance, spends six whole years of their lives dreaming. Incredible inventions, discoveries and creative ideas have occurred as a result of a dream or nightmare: Google, the Terminator and the double helix structure of DNA were all first imagined in the realm of dreams and nightmares.

We decided to delve deeper into the fascinating land of slumber, to create a fun and informative ‘Dreams and Nightmares’ infographic. We have collated some of what we think is the most interesting scientific research and fun facts for you to enjoy.

So as you settle in to bed tonight and feel yourself drifting off, maybe you too will dream up a fantastic creation, perhaps one to rival James Cameron’s Terminator. Whatever happens, you know that the next night ‘Dreams and Nightmares’ will always be back…

Peter’s problem strikes a cord with Made To Measure Blinds

Problem blinds are a bind, so it’s no surprise that this clip of Peter in Family Guy caught our eye.

Here’s our hero manfully doing battle – and losing – with a badly behaved blind and understandably losing his temper.

As you can see, the clip attracted the attention of blogger Deyan Halachliyski.

He wrote: ‘The other day I was watching Family Guy’s latest episode – 12 And A Half Angry Men – and this funny scene inspired a post.

‘I guess the animation says it all. To open/close the blinds you’re supposed to alternately pull on the two strings.

‘Although I knew the theory I could never do it in practice – one of the sides was always lower than the other.

‘Clearly no one wants to have the left part all the way up and the right halfway down, so why was it designed this way? Why couldn’t there just be a single string doing all the work or one for opening and one for closing?’

Well, Deyan (and Peter) we can explain.

The amount of cords will depend on the width of the blind, and the wider you go the more ladder cords will be required to support the blind and slats. There is no way round it – you just can’t operate a blind with just one cord.

So to avoid Peter’s problem in the past all you needed to do was pull all the cords at the same time together and the blind would have risen equally.

However, EU regulations introduced in April 2014 on child safety addressed the issue of loose and looped cords and solved Peter’s problem as well.

As a result of the new regulations all cords or multiple cords must now enter a cord collector at the top of the blind, and then exit the other side of the acorn as a single cord so all cords now remain the same level.

So, we still have multiple cords, but the safety measure keeps them all together.

How a Made To Measure Blind contributes to a warmer winter interior

In these dark winter days we all need to snuggle – and your home can be a haven when it’s gloomy outside, especially with the right made to measure blind to help keep the warm in.

Traditionally, we turn to colours from the warm side of the colour spectrum such as reds and oranges when we want to make a space seem cosy. But this season, thanks to some innovative designs and fabrics, even the shades that we normally regard as ‘cooler’ can be used to line our nest.

One of our favourite fabrics this year has had an amazing reinvention. Harris tweed has always been an outstanding quality product, but now it’s back in better, brighter colours and being used in some truly imaginative ways – view a selection of our range.

The Laird dining chairs ($305 each) we’ve picked out look fantastic against the Timothy Oulton Salvage dinner table ($1,295), and give this dining room a gorgeous hunting lodge feeling, while the pale blues and charcoals of the fabric lighten and refresh a traditional look.

The table and chairs are available from Barker and Stonehouse, who also stock the cute and chunky Harris Tweed pumpkin stools from Tetrad (small $239, large $489).
Accessories are particularly important when it comes to making a room cosy, as this bedroom styled by Marks and Spencer shows.

The graphic wallpaper and bedding should be too much for the eye when put together, but they aren’t – the luxurious pile of throws, blankets and pillows in plain but complementary shades make sure of that. It means this busy room can even take a geometric rug that adds an important splash of colour – snug yet cool at the same time.

Throws are fabulous in the winter for the extra comfort your chilled body craves – we also love this delightful faux fur from Jasper Conran at Debenhams, which is $130.

And you can even have a bit of fun while keeping the cold at bay. We’re delighted by the amusing appliqué cushion by Abigail Ahern/Edition at Debenhams, $40, and Occa-Homes By Nord Polar bed linen, from $23, is a treat for the eye.

All these cool shades make a refreshing change in our homes, proving that there’s more than one way to create an effect if you give it some careful thought. Warm colours will always have a treasured place in our homes during this chilly time of year, of course – but blues, greys and icy browns also have a beguiling part to play.

If you’re looking for blinds to complete your cosy, comforting interior, may we suggest a warming pleated blind.

And don’t forget our fabulous December offer – you have a chance to win a $50 John Lewis voucher simply by placing an order with us.

• Why a pleated Made To Measure Blind will help keep you warm in the winter

• Win a $50 John Lewis Voucher when you place an order in December – find out more and start shopping!

Can I fit a Made to Measure Wooden blind to my back door?

Made To Measure Blinds are so versatile that you can give your creativity full rein when choosing where to fit them.

We often receive enquiries from people who want to fit them in a location other than a window, and we are happy to provide helpful advice and guidance.

There aren’t many situations where you can’t fit a Made To Measure Blind, so when a customer asked about fitting a wooden blind to his back door we were happy to respond promptly with simple-to-follow instructions.

There are four things to consider when measuring, and these images illustrate them perfectly.

* Measure the gap you have behind the handle to the frame (B). This will determine the slat size you can use – 25mm, 35mm or 50mm.

• The width will be governed by the handle back plate (C), so measure the edge of the bead to the back plate and add the same the other side to keep the blind central.

Order the exact measurement so we do not make any further deductions in manufacture. You will also receive returns on the wooden cover valance to hide the headrail (see image).

• Allow 5cm above and below the glass bead to attach the brackets at the top, and space for a holdown clip – should you wish to use one to stop the blind moving around.

• If you have clearance on the door when in the open position you won’t need to fix a door stop at the bottom of the door, but in some situations you might have to fit one to avoid crushing the blind when opening the door.

Made To Measure wooden venetian blinds are perfect for enhancing a room’s appearance by adding a contemporary elegance to the décor.

Whatever the look and feel of your home, a wood Venetian blind represents an inexpensive idea to complement your existing furnishings.

This type of Made To Measure Blind will also:

  • Help to control room temperature
  • Enable you to set how much light and heat can enter a room, and
  • Protect your furniture and furnishings from fading